Wednesday, September 26, 2012

Parma & Modena

After a few rather full days, including yesterday's unexpected excursion to San Marino, we were pretty tired today and i woke up feeling a bit under the weather. That said, we couldn't just lay about, so today we took the train west to Parma, which is aabout an hour away. Parma is known for its ham and cheese and there was certainly a lot of both. We walked the streets and through markets selling fruits and vegetables, meats and fish, and clothing and housewares. There were many more piazzas and churches to visit and they were lovely, although today I think we both felt a bit saturated with Italian splendour. It is not that we didn't appreciate what we saw, but it didn't feel like the first time we had seen it.

After Parma, we took the train to Modena (half way between Bologna and Parma), which is another gastronomic town, famous for its balsamic vinegar. It was quite attractive and was very quiet when we arrived - during lunch when the shops are closed. We settled in for a nice lunch on the piazza and waited out an afternoon thundershower before visiting Modena's most famous site, its impressive 11th century cathedral, which we spent some time in before heading back to Bologna for a bit of a rest.


People in this part of Italy certainly speak less English than they did in the other areas we have visited.
In the other cities, we would attempt to communicate in Italian, but at the first error or pause, the other party would jump in with excellect English. Up here however we have had several encounters where we relied on our awkward Italian and sign language.

We are headed out now for a bit to eat or something. Tomorrow morning we catch a train to Venice - our final destination. We are pretty excited about this last leg of the journey, as it should be spectacular.

We will blog again when we are able.
odd graffiti in modena

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